The Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (ESDM) stated that throughout 2019, Indonesia became the largest nickel ore producer in the world. The Geological Agency of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources noted that last year, world nickel ore production reached 2.67 million tons.
Indonesia is the largest producer, with nickel production of 800,000 tons. That achievement was much higher than other countries. The Philippines, as the world’s second largest producer, only produces 420,000 tons of nickel.
“The areas of Southeast Sulawesi, Central Sulawesi and North Maluku have the greatest potential in Indonesia until now,” said the Head of the Geological Agency of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, Eko Budi Lelono, in a written statement on Wednesday (14/10/2020).
Based on data from the Geological Agency of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, Indonesia had nickel ore resources of 11,887 million tons.
Meanwhile, the total metal resources reached 174 million tons and 68 million tons of metal reserves.
The Special Staff of the Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources for the Acceleration of Mineral and Coal Governance, Irwandy Arif, assessed that with high nickel resources, Indonesia needs to focus on downstreaming, in order to suppress imports and also create energy independence.
“Without downstreaming, the domestic industry will always depend on imported raw materials, so it is very fragile and easily swayed by non-technical factors in the form of the Rupiah exchange rate,” he said.